New member discount from STAY-TUFF fence

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TSCRA is proud to welcome STAY-TUFF Fence as our newest participant in the member discount program. Through this program TSCRA members can receive 5 percent additional discount off the purchase of any qualifying STAY-TUFF fence fabric and/or fencing tools. Read more…

Court strips lesser prairie chicken of federal protection

© Gerard Bertrand

District Judge Robert Junell ruled Tuesday in Midland that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service failed to make a proper evaluation of the states’ conservation plan when it listed the lesser prairie chicken — a species of grouse with feathered feet and striped plumage — as threatened. Read more at ABC News…

TSCRA applauds decision on lesser prairie chicken

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TSCRA applauded U.S. District Judge Robert A. Junell’s decision to overturn the listing of the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species. This announcement comes after the lesser prairie chicken, a Great Plains bird, was listed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as threatened in 2014. “Judge Junell’s decision to vacate the threatened listing of the lesser prairie chicken is a major victory for ranchers and landowners across the country,” said TSCRA President Pete Bonds. “It is apparent that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service failed to consider the many state conservation efforts before listing the prairie chicken as threatened. “The administration should realize by now that ranchers are the best stewards of our nation’s land, and they have proven their ability to successfully Read more…

TSCRF now accepting scholarship applications

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The Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Foundation offers scholarships to students pursuing a degree program in agriculture or an agriculture-related programs such as animal science, pre-vet, agribusiness, range management or wildlife. Applicants must graduating high school seniors or college undergraduates currently enrolled or accepted at an accredited university in Texas or Oklahoma. Applicants are selected on the basis of their interest in the industry, leadership, academic achievement and financial need. Applications are due Feb. 1, 2015, and are awarded in March. For more information, click here.  

It’s what’s for dinner: Sonoma-style beef skewers

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Serve these top sirloin beef skewers with orzo and chard for a uniquely Sonoma taste. Read more at BeefItsWhatsforDinner.com…

TSCRA Policy Conference: Committee topics, Early registration discounts

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All TSCRA policy committees will have extended time to meet during the Policy Conference. Committees have put together an outstanding lineup of topics and speakers covering a wide range of issues. Read more…

TSCRA Crime Watch: Cow killed and butchered in NE OK

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TSCRA Special Ranger John Cummings, Dist. 5 in northeast Oklahoma, reports the killing of a cow on a property near Collinsville in Tulsa County. On Aug. 30, someone entered the property through an unlocked gate and killed a black heavy bred Angus cow weighing approximately 1500 pounds. The cow was partially butchered. If you have any information regarding this case, please call Special Ranger Cummings at 918-342-0888.

This week’s Summer Sale: Khaki mesh-back cap

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Cattle Raisers Trading Co. is offering 10 percent off all TSCRA Khaki Mesh Back Caps through Sept. 8. Don’t miss out on this medium profile, mid-crown mesh back cap with the TSCRA seal on front and “Since 1877” on the back. Use promo code MESH at checkout to get yours while they last! Click here to go to the Cattle Raisers Trading Co. online store.

EPA reaction to injunction muddies WOTUS rule

USDA/NRCS photo by Jeff Vanuga.

Organizations are concerned about the current status of the Clean Water Rule, also known as WOTUS. Listen to the audio report at Agri-Pulse..

Texas farmers brace for new clean water rule

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Local uncertainty abounds as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s new Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule kicks in on Sept. 1, extending the agency’s regulatory power to smaller bodies of water, including some streams that only flow after heavy precipitation. The changes mean more landowners may need to apply for permits for work affecting water that now falls under federal jurisdiction. But some environmental law experts say the rule is so broad that it’s unclear which farmers, ranchers and landowners will be affected. Read more at The Texas Tribune…

84th Legislative Session adjourns on a successful note for the TCEQ

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Key bills passed during the last legislative session include drought planning, water needs and expedited permitting. New leadership, along with shuffled chairmanships in each chamber resulted in an increase of the agency’s appropriation and strengthened its ability to create innovative solutions to some of the state’s daunting challenges. Among the bills passed into law were projects dealing with aquifer storage and recovery, saltwater desalination and disposal of nonhazardous brine. Read more at the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality…

Canada to replace China as largest US export market

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Agricultural exports in fiscal 2016 are forecast at $138.5 billion, which is $1.0 billion below the revised fiscal 2015 forecast. Bulk export values are forecast to fall, primarily as a result of lower U.S. oilseed prices and export volumes. U.S. high-value product exports are forecast to rise in fiscal 2016, although a strong U.S. dollar could limit export increases of these products. Canada is expected to return as the largest U.S. export market for the first time since 2010. Read more at the Cattle Trader Center…

Texas crop, weather, for Sept. 1, 2015

Late summer rains are often followed by fall armyworm outbreaks in pastures and hay fields.Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo

Dry weather followed by rain in the late summer and early fall means farmers should be on the lookout for fall armyworms. Given their immense appetite, great numbers and marching ability, fall armyworms can damage entire fields or pastures in a few days. Read more…

Stewardship of Antimicrobials Workshop to be held in Amarillo

photo courtesy Oklahoma State University

Regional leaders in livestock production, the veterinary community and the feed supply industry will be among the speakers at a Sept. 11 workshop in Amarillo. Organized by Farm Foundation, NFP, the workshop is an opportunity for participants to gain a comprehensive understanding of two Guidance for Industry (GFIs) issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regarding the use of medically-important antimicrobial drugs in food-producing animals, as well as the FDA’s revised Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD). Read more…

USDA expands forage crop insurance option nationwide for livestock producers

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) is expanding crop insurance coverage for ranchers to help them protect against loss of forage produced for feeding livestock. The Rainfall Index Pasture, Rangeland, Forage pilot program (PRF) will now be available in all 48 contiguous states beginning with the 2016 crop year. Read more…

Survey shows limited access to land for new farmers

Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo by Mark Kelley.

A new survey of land ownership in the lower 48 states illustrates some of the difficulties would-be farmers face in acquiring farmland. The survey, by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), shows that about a tenth of the 911 million farmland acres outside of Alaska and Hawaii – about 91.5 million acres – is slated for ownership transfer in the next five years, not including farmland that is in or expected to be put into wills. Landlords expect to keep or put nearly 48 percent of these acres in trusts. Some 26 million acres are expected to be sold to a relative or given as a gift, and only 21 million acres are expected to be sold to a non-relative. This means that only a Read more…

TDA Market Recap, Sept. 1, 2015

Texas Department of Agriculture

For the week ending Aug. 29, 2015, Texas auctions quoted feeder cattle prices $3 to $15 lower per hundredweight (cwt). Texas weekly direct feeder cattle sales were fully steady. Wholesale beef values were lower, with Choice Grade losing $0.03 to close at $244.21 per cwt and Select Grade losing $0.48 to close at $233.12 per cwt. Net export sales totaling 12,800 metric tons (MT) for Aug. 14 – 20 were up 54 percent from the previous week. Export shipments of 16,300 MT were up four percent from the previous week. Shipments primarily went to Mexico, Japan and Canada. Read more…

Last day for early Policy Conference registration discounts

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Monday is your last day to get early pre-registration discounts for TSCRA’s Policy Conference Sept. 23-25 in San Antonio. Prices go up on Tuesday, so be sure to register now to reserve your spot! Click here to view our newly-updated schedule and registration information…

Oklahoma man pleads no contest on charges of larceny

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An eastern Oklahoma man pleaded no contest to a charge of felony larceny of cattle on Aug. 18 after he was named in the 2014 theft and sale of 4 heifers from an Adair County, Okla., rancher. TSCRA Special Ranger Bart Perrier led the investigation. Jay David Fuson, 25, of Stilwell, Okla., was a suspect in the theft of 4 heifers on Sept. 19, 2014, from a rancher near Christie, Okla. The heifers were taken from a set of locked pens on the victim’s ranch. The following day Fuson transported the cattle to the Tahlequah Livestock Auction, where he attempted to sell them under different names. Read more…

True or false: Color is a good indicator of beef doneness

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When grilling beef at home, is it safe to say that beef is done when it’s brown all the way through or feels warm to the touch? Color and touch are not accurate ways to determine the doneness of a steak, roast or hamburger. Read more at FactsAboutBeef.com…

Expert: Managing pastures doesn’t mean only growing grass

Sideoats grama grass is a highly palatable plant that decreases in density under continuous grazing. Texas A&M AgriLife Communications photo by Kay Ledbetter

What a pasture should look like – whether a waving sea of grass or one with diverse vegetation – depends on the cattleman’s final goal and actions taken before rain falls. Read more…

Cow-Calf Corner: Late summer Oklahoma crop and forage conditions; Growing bred replacement heifers

Photo courtesy Oklahoma State University

In the Aug. 31 edition of Cow-Calf Corner, a weekly newsletter from the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Agency, Derrell Peel talks late summer Oklahoma crop and forage conditions and Glenn Selk talks growing those bred replacement heifers. Read more…

Henryetta man arrested on charges of cattle theft

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A Henryetta, Okla., man surrendered to authorities Wednesday and was charged with 7 counts of felony larceny of livestock. According to investigating TSCRA Special Ranger Bart Perrier, Devin Alex Longan, 19, and Kiley Johnson, are suspects in the theft of 7 calves from an Okfuskee County rancher. The stolen calves were transported to the Okmulgee Livestock Auction and sold. Longan and Johnson are alleged to have visited the Okmulgee stockyards on the following day to retrieve a check for the sale of the calves and dividing the profits. Read more…

Ranch gathering roundup

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More than 350 members, family and guests attended ranch gatherings in Granbury, Hereford and Lubbock this week. TSCRA Special Rangers gave updates on recent theft cases and staff gave attendees updates on legislative activities. Read more…

Federal court ruling in North Dakota blocks “Waters of the U.S.” rule

USDA/NRCS photo by Jeff Vanuga.

U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson of North Dakota on Thursday issued a preliminary injunction against implementation of the Clean Water regulation, saying a group of 13 states was likely to succeed in their lawsuit challenging the Environmental Protection Agency regulation as unlawful. The judge gave two reasons for his decision: “(1)it appears likely that the EPA has violated its Congressional grant of authority in its promulgation of the Rule at issue and (2) it appears likely the EPA failed to comply with requirements when promulgating the Rule.” TSCRA President Pete Bonds also made a statement applauding the North Dakota federal court decision on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule. Read more…

US Drought Monitor and Summary, Aug. 25, 2015

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Areas of moderate to heavy rain fell over portions of Texas (generally 0.5-4.0 inches, and 5.0-8.0 inch totals near the central Texas coast), which helped to alleviate severe short-term drought. This warranted a nearly complete overhaul of the drought depiction for the Lone Star state. Read more…

TSCRA Crime Watch: Cattle missing in South Texas

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TSCRA Special Ranger Steve Martin, Dist. 30 in South Texas, reports 8 head of cattle missing from properties in Brooks, Karnes and Bee Counties. Some time since June two Charolais bulls went missing from pastures in Karnes and Bee Counties. Both bulls, one weighing approximately 1100 pounds and the other weighing approximately 1700 pounds, have a 4E connected brand on their left hip. Martin also reports 5 cows and a bull missing from a property in Brooks County since Aug. 1. Two of the cows are 5 year old reddish Beefmaster crosses with no horns weighing approximately 800 to 900 pounds, each. These cattle have an “open 8” brand that looks like a shoe print on the left hip; the remaining 3 cows are two-year-old Read more…

Southwest Barbecue Team promotes Texas-style barbecue in Japan, Korea

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Greg Hanes, U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) assistant vice president of international marketing, recently joined a group of U.S. producers in Japan and South Korea to promote Texas-style barbecue and the advantages of using U.S. beef – especially underutilized cuts – as part of the American dish. Listen to the story or read more from the U.S. Meat Export Federation…

New feral hog video series offers management expertise

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The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service is taking steps to help landowners manage the state’s ever-increasing feral hog population. A recent step is the Wild Pig Management Video Series. Read more at the Texas Water Resources Institute…

It’s shaping up to be a jubilee quail year

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From seemingly teetering on the brink of extinction to roaring back with a vengeance, wild quail seem to have made a miraculous comeback across Texas. Read more…

It’s what’s for dinner: Spicy Portuguese beef steak kabobs

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These steak kabobs cook up quick for a tasty, spicy favorite. Read more at beefitswhatsfordinner.com…

TSCRA Crime Watch: 10 head of cattle missing in East Texas

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TSCRA Special Ranger Jimmy Dickson, Dist. 14 in East Texas, reports the theft of 10 head of cattle from a property in Freestone County. Some time between Aug. 18 and 24 a thief or thieves removed a chain and lock from a gate to steal the 9 red unbranded heifers and 1 black cow branded JJ on the left hip. If you have any information regarding this case, please call Special Ranger Dickson at 903-586-8733.  

Summer Sale on Cattle Raisers Trading Co. T-Shirt

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Cattle Raisers Trading Co. is offering 10 percent off all CRTC T-Shirts from Wednesday, Aug. 26 through Tuesday, Sept. 1. Don’t miss out on this versatile, cotton crewneck  shirt that is perfect for everyday wear! Get them while they last – use promo code LOGO at checkout. Click here to go to the Cattle Raisers Trading Co. online store.

TSCRA Policy Conference: Risk management for ranchers

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With fall calf values nearing $1,500 per head, the average TSCRA member may gross more than $60,000 in calf sales this fall. Given these historically high values, ranchers are increasingly interested in ways to protect their price risk. Hear about this topic and more at TSCRA’s Policy Conference in San Antonio Sept. 23 – 25. Read more…

An old crime is on the rise

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Crooks and criminals in America’s farm country are turning to an old crime — cattle rustling. The high price for beef and substance abuse are behind the surge in livestock theft, and that’s putting some ranchers on edge. National Public Radio talked to victims of theft and the TSCRA Special Rangers who investigate. Read more or listen to the story at NPR.org…

Texas crop, weather, for Aug. 26, 2015

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A combination of weather patterns is causing wholesale die-offs of fish in many East and North Texas farm ponds and lakes. Most of die-offs have been from East and North Texas. However, the same confluence of weather conditions – high temperatures and cloudy days followed by cool thunderstorms – could likely be causing fish kills in other areas as well. The conditions are causing oxygen depletion in farm ponds and lakes. Read more…

The Browning Blog: A Medley of Climate and Crop Notes

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In the Aug. 25 edition of The Browning Blog, exclusive content for TSCRA members by climatologist Evelyn Browning-Garriss, we hear about the variety of weather events affecting crops and prices in August. Read more…

Consumer Reports study confuses serious safety issues, potentially misleading consumers about beef safety

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Sources: factsaboutbeef.com, A Consumer Reports study released Monday includes misleading information that could increase consumer confusion about food safety heading into the Labor Day weekend, say beef safety experts. “I have relied on Consumer Reports when purchasing cars and electronics but unfortunately this report will not help consumers when purchasing safe ground beef. The good news is the bacteria found in the Consumer Reports tests are not the type of bacteria commonly associated with foodborne illness in ground beef,” says Mandy Carr-Johnson, Ph.D., senior executive director, Science and Product Solutions, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), a contractor to the beef checkoff. “As an industry, our number one priority is producing the safest beef possible. Ground beef is the safest it has ever been with greater than 90 percent Read more…

5 things you should know about the EPA WOTUS rule

USDA/NRCS photo by Jeff Vanuga.

While experts say it is unlikely the EPA will go immediately into an enforcement campaign when it comes to the Clean Water Act (CWS) and its Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rules, it’s still good to know how the rule could affect you and your operation.  WOTUS expands the federal CWA jurisdiction over many landscape features found on farm, ranch and forest lands across the nation. The rule is expected to go into effect Aug. 28.  Read more at Texas Farm Bureau…

TDA Market Recap, Aug. 25, 2015

Texas Department of Agriculture

For the week ending Aug. 22, 2015, Texas auctions quoted feeder cattle prices mostly steady, with instances of sales ranging from $8 lower to $10 higher per hundredweight (cwt). Texas weekly direct feeder cattle sales were fully steady. Wholesale beef values were higher, with Choice Grade gaining $1.74 to close at $246.46 per cwt and Select Grade gaining $0.14 to close at $235.58 per cwt. Net export sales totaling 8,300 metric tons (MT) for Aug. 7 – 13 were down 32 percent from the previous week. Export shipments of 9,900 MT were down four percent from the previous week. Shipments primarily went to Japan, South Korea and Mexico. Read more…